Conversations in the Dark

“F*ck.”


“What?” said a voice behind me as an arm slid around my torso, holding me close. I turned on my side to face her as the clock struck midnight.


“Nothing.” I smiled as I wrapped my arms around her waist and pulled her close, burying my face in her shoulder as she held me tighter.


“You‘re an idiot. Which human in their right mind goes f*ck that loudly in the middle of the night? I have a court hearing tomorrow, shut that goddamn medical book of yours" she grumbled, covering her ears. "Supraspinatus and teres minor my ass" she mumbled against my skin. “Turn off that stupid night light, which idiot lies down and reads medical books when their girlfriend is in bed with them?”


“Babe, I’m a resident now. This guy just got an MRI done and since I’m doing internal medicine-” "Don't you dare. I have a pro-bono case in court tomorrow. Your MRI can wait.” “But-”


"You know what, fine. I'm going to the couch. I hope your pager falls into a patient's urine bowl!" “That’s not what it’s-”


“Don’t.”


I reached for her wrist and pulled her close, interlocking our fingers. “Don’t go” I whined as I gave her the best puppy eyes I could manage, while trying not to laugh. As I held her hand, I suddenly realised she was still wearing the promise ring I gave her 15 years ago when we first started dating. Seeing it still on her finger made me smile a little as I looked up at her. “Stay, please?”


"And why should I? I'm just your annoying little lawyer girlfriend, aren’t I?" She teased. “Well yes, but-”


"Yes?" She threw a pillow at me.


“You know I love you.” I gave her a cheeky grin.


"Oh really?" She teased me further "Do you just love me? You better imagine a future with me with 5 kids.”


“I’m sorry, FIVE?” I choked.


"I have the names penned down as well." she winked.


“One.”


"Two. Hum do humare do" she bargained.


I couldn’t help but chuckle “Deal.”

A few moments of comfortable silence passed as she settled back down next to me, closing her eyes as she turned to bury her face in the crook of my neck. We had been dating since we were 15, meaning we’d practically grown up together. I couldn’t imagine my life without her in it, even if I tried. I looked down at her and smiled fondly. Her breathing was now light and she had taken one of my hands in hers; meaning she was almost asleep. And this random wave of familiarity and belonging washed over me, making me feel really warm inside.


As I stroked her hair, I thought of everything we’d been through together. She’d been there for all my milestones, and through some of the worst nights of my life; like a constant pillar of support. I’d always heard people say “Home isn’t a place, it’s a feeling”, but I never really knew what they meant until today. I felt my eyes soften as I looked down at her again. She was asleep this time and I couldn’t help but think about how lucky I was to have this be the last thing I saw every night while going to sleep; how lucky I was to have someone who gets me as well as she does. She was my person.


“Psssst. You up?” I whispered.


No response. I poked her shoulder a few times before she jolted upright in surprise, temporarily startled before giving me her signature death stare.


“Okay, the only reason that I’m going to accept for being woken up again is that you’re either dead or dying, what the f*ck is wrong with you?”


I pulled her close as my breathing turned shaky; I think I knew what was coming.

“Hey hey, you okay?” The annoyance in her voice was instantly replaced by concern as she held me tight, trying to figure out what was going on.


I smiled against her skin and held her for support as my voice dropped to a mere whisper “Will you marry me?”



Author: Nandini Patil


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